My favorite Chinese restaurant while in the Santa Cruz area is Hong Kong Garden. They are located in Aptos, California, in the Seascape Village shopping area. It’s right across from an upper scale 300 room beach resort, and yep you can walk down to the beach from the restaurant.
The hot and sour soup was quite yummy, in fact, perhaps the best I’ve tasted so far.
My wife and I both ordered chow mein and fried rice which was fresh tasting and served steaming hot.
If you want tea, you must ask for it, not an included item with the lunch special apparently, they do give you a carafe of water w/ lemon though.
It’s a very small restaurant with one server, which seemed to be sufficient for prompt service.
Hong Kong Garden
14 Seascape Vlg, Aptos, CA 95003-6100